First reading Acts 2:14,22-33

God raised this man Jesus to life, and all of us are witnesses to this

On the day of Pentecost Peter stood up with the Eleven and addressed the crowd in a loud voice: ‘Men of Israel, listen to what I am going to say: Jesus the Nazarene was a man commended to you by God by the miracles and portents and signs that God worked through him when he was among you, as you all know. This man, who was put into your power by the deliberate intention and foreknowledge of God, you took and had crucified by men outside the Law. You killed him, but God raised him to life, freeing him from the pangs of Hades; for it was impossible for him to be held in its power since, as David says of him:
 
I saw the Lord before me always,
for with him at my right hand nothing can shake me.
So my heart was glad
and my tongue cried out with joy;
my body, too, will rest in the hope
that you will not abandon my soul to Hades
nor allow your holy one to experience corruption.
You have made known the way of life to me,
you will fill me with gladness through your presence.
 
‘Brothers, no one can deny that the patriarch David himself is dead and buried: his tomb is still with us. But since he was a prophet, and knew that God had sworn him an oath to make one of his descendants succeed him on the throne, what he foresaw and spoke about was the resurrection of the Christ: he is the one who was not abandoned to Hades, and whose body did not experience corruption. God raised this man Jesus to life, and all of us are witnesses to that. Now raised to the heights by God’s right hand, he has received from the Father the Holy Spirit, who was promised, and what you see and hear is the outpouring of that Spirit.’
 
 

Responsorial Psalm 15(16):1-2,5,7-11

Preserve me, Lord, I take refuge in you.
or
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!
 
Preserve me, God, I take refuge in you.
  I say to the Lord: ‘You are my God.
O Lord, it is you who are my portion and cup;
  it is you yourself who are my prize.’
 
I will bless the Lord who gives me counsel,
  who even at night directs my heart.
I keep the Lord ever in my sight:
  since he is at my right hand, I shall stand firm.
 
And so my heart rejoices, my soul is glad;
  even my body shall rest in safety.
For you will not leave my soul among the dead,
  nor let your beloved know decay.
 
You will show me the path of life,
  the fullness of joy in your presence,
  at your right hand happiness for ever.
 
 

Sequence

Victimae Paschali Laudes

Christians, to the Paschal Victim
  offer sacrifice and praise.
The sheep are ransomed by the Lamb;
and Christ, the undefiled,
hath sinners to his Father reconciled.
 
Death with life contended:
  combat strangely ended!
 
Life’s own Champion, slain,
  yet lives to reign.
 
Tell us, Mary:
  say what thou didst see
  upon the way.
 
The tomb the Living did enclose;
I saw Christ’s glory as he rose!
 
The angels there attesting;
shroud with grave-clothes resting.
 
Christ, my hope, has risen:
he goes before you into Galilee.
 
That Christ is truly risen
  from the dead we know.
Victorious king, thy mercy show!
 
 

Gospel Matthew 28:8-15

Tell my brothers that they must leave for Galilee: they will see me there

Filled with awe and great joy the women came quickly away from the tomb and ran to tell the disciples.
  And there, coming to meet them, was Jesus. ‘Greetings’ he said. And the women came up to him and, falling down before him, clasped his feet. Then Jesus said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers that they must leave for Galilee; they will see me there.’
  While they were on their way, some of the guard went off into the city to tell the chief priests all that had happened. These held a meeting with the elders and, after some discussion, handed a considerable sum of money to the soldiers with these instructions, ‘This is what you must say, “His disciples came during the night and stole him away while we were asleep.” And should the governor come to hear of this, we undertake to put things right with him ourselves and to see that you do not get into trouble.’ The soldiers took the money and carried out their instructions, and to this day that is the story among the Jews.
 
 
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Meeting the Risen Jesus on the way

The women, the first witnesses of the Resurrection, did not just see the empty tomb and hear the angel’s message. Above all, the risen Jesus Himself encountered them on their way. How full must be their hearts, and how their faith must be renewed in that encounter!
 
Jesus, too, comes to meet us on our way in our daily lives amid doubts, perplexity and fear. He comes to show us that He is truly risen and alive in the present with us. Seeing Him alive, we can let go of fear and be open to the newness that He brings. We become witnesses who are sent, like the women, to spread news of hope and life instead of despair and death to others. Let us meet Jesus on our way today and be sent as witnesses of new life and faith to our sisters and brothers.
 
Reflective question:
What news of hope and life can we spread this Easter to others?
 
 
Acknowledgment: Reflections are based on “Prayer for Living: The Word of God for Daily Prayer Year B” by Sr Maria Jose FMVD.